[OPE-L:6535] Re: [OPe-L] Re: Noncapital and variable capital

Eduardo Maldonado Filho (eduardo@orion.ufrgs.br)
Sat, 2 May 1998 19:06:58 -0300

Jurriaan wrote (re: 26/04/98)

> Which "concentration-profitability" hypothesis am I supposed to be fond
> of?

In the empirical literature on profit rate differentials, the hypothesis
that oligopolist sectors are capable to obtain, on the average, profit
rates which are higher than those obtained by the competitive sectors is
referred to as the 'concentration-profitability' hypothesis.

> > The argument [of "orthodox Marxism"] is that
> > Marx's theory of competition was valid for the competitive stage of
> > capitalism (which was the characteristic of the capitalism in Marx's
> > time), but it is not anymore relevant in the stage of monopoly
capitalism. As
> > consequence, they proposed to incorporate the new "laws of compettion",
> > which were developed by "bourgeois economics", into Marx's framework.

> This is certainly not the case in Prof. Mandel's argument which I
> to, which is in fact a critique of Baran & Sweezy and the "state monopoly
> capitalism" school.

My comments were not directed to Mandel, but to the idea that accumulation
of capital has led capitalism to the stage of monopoly capitalism (which is
caracterized by the lack of the tendency of industry profit rate to
equlize). This argument is present, among others, in Baran and Sweezy's

> I'm inclined to agree with that, although I think there is a lot of more
> say about capitalist civilisation than Marx said.

I certainly agree with you on that.